Ripton


WORKERS WILL BE busy well into November making $2.5 million in repairs aimed at strengthening the banks of the Middlebury River off Route 125 in Ripton. They are shown here installing river diversion devices this summer. Photo courtesy of VTrans
MIDDLEBURY — Those traveling along Route 125 in Ripton have been getting a firsthand look at a $2.5 million effort to stabilize key sections of the Middlebury River stream bank, which has been periodically breached during heavy rains. The work, according to Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) officials, is scheduled to proceed into November and involves a total of 1,654 feet in six distinct areas of the river bank, spread out from about a mile south of Ripton village  to a mile north of the village. The goal, officials said, is to strengthen weaker shoulders of the river so they’re less...
RIPTON — The Vermont State Board of Education (VSBE) has asked the town of Ripton and the Addison Central School District Board to re-engage in conversations to keep Ripton within the ACSD. And the board served notice that if those talks don’t bear fruit, the small town isn’t likely to be granted its wish to become an independent school district until July 1, 2023. Addison Central Superintendent Peter Burrows described that as the consensus position taken by the VSBE at its Wednesday meeting, a position taken as the Addison Independent went to press. The Independent will provide a more...
RIPTON — With the town of Ripton essentially home-free in its bid to separate from the Addison Central School District (see vote story), the tiny town now faces the huge task of finding an entity that could help it secure special education, transportation, central office and other crucial services for its students. The newly elected Ripton School Board has been counting on the town being paired with a supervisory union in the region that could provide the aforementioned services. But officials recently received discouraging news from two sources that could make their quest even harder: • ...
MIDDLEBURY — Small numbers of voters in six Addison County towns showed up at the polls on Tuesday to approve Middlebury’s $323,000 investment in a solar project in Bristol’s former landfill, and to endorse a financial separation agreement between the town of Ripton and the Addison Central School District. Middlebury residents voted 530-109 to buy into the 500-kilowatt Bristol Community Solar (BCS) project through a 25-year bond. The Acorn Energy Co-op is the local nonprofit spearheading the solar array, which will be built at the site of the former Bristol landfill off Pine Street....

VOTERS IN SIX Middlebury-area towns will be asked to endorse a financial agreement for Ripton’s separation from the Addison Central School District. Gov. Phil Scott weighed in on the subject of fractured school districts during a swing through Addison County on Saturday. Independent photo/Steve James
ADDISON COUNTY — Residents in six Addison Central School District (ACSD) towns will vote on Tuesday, Aug. 31, on whether they endorse the financial terms of the town of Ripton’s exit from the district. The proposed deal would ensure Ripton can leave the district not owing, or being owed, any money. The financial separation agreement — which will be fielded by voters in Bridport, Cornwall, Middlebury, Salisbury, Shoreham and Weybridge — essentially calls for Ripton to take over the approximately $150,000 in debt remaining on a solar energy project installed at its local school back in 2013....
RIPTON / LINCOLN — Patti Casey and the Wicked Fine Players will perform a live concert booked by the Ripton Community Coffee House on Saturday, Sept. 4, at 7:30 p.m.  Take note, the concert has been moved to Burnham Hall in Lincoln for Sept. 4! RCCH officials said Burnham Hall is well ventilated with plenty of room to socially distance. COVID-19 protocols will be in place. Patti Casey has reunited with longtime musical collaborator Colin McCaffrey and former Bluegrass Gospel Project bandmates Steve Light and Kirk Lord. Count on hearing the music you know and love and some new songs, too, as...
MIDDLEBURY — Ripton’s quest for independence from the Addison Central School District (ACSD) hinges on an Aug. 31 Australian ballot vote in six communities, where residents will be asked to support a financial separation agreement that essentially calls for Ripton to take over the approximately $150,000 in debt remaining on a solar energy project installed at its local school back in 2013. The ACSD board on Monday unanimously approved terms for Ripton’s financial exit agreement, which will be decided by voters in the communities of Bridport, Cornwall, Middlebury, Salisbury, Shoreham and...

VERMONT LT. GOV. Molly Gray listens to and speaks with folks concerned about the erosion of community schools during a July 21 stop at Ripton Elementary School. Gray, shown sitting next to Sarah Wesson, in particular heard from Ripton and Lincoln residents who are in different stages of withdrawing from their respective school districts. Independent photo/John Flowers
RIPTON — Lt. Gov. Molly Gray wasn’t even in office six years ago when Act 46 — Vermont’s school governance consolidation law — took effect. But she’s starting to learn during her first year on the job that Act 46 is becoming increasingly unpopular — particularly in Addison County, where four towns have mounted efforts to withdraw from their respective school districts in an effort to maintain control over their local elementary schools. Gray got an earful from Act 46 opponents last Wednesday during a visit to Ripton Elementary School, where she invited people to share their views on rural...
RIPTON — Ripton Volunteer Fire and Rescue will host the Ripton Town Picnic on Saturday, July 31. This is a town potluck — Fire and Rescue will provide hamburgers, hotdogs, buns, chips, water and lemonade; participants are asked to bring other food to share. The picnic will be held at the Fire and Rescue station at the corner of Lincoln Road and Dugway Road from 12 noon to 2 p.m. People are asked to park in the Ripton Elementary School parking lot and use the path to the Fire and Rescue station. “This is a great time to get out and see your friends and neighbors,” said Fire and Rescue Squad...

FROM LEFT: MOLLY Witters, Joanna Doria, Steve Cash
RIPTON — Just 69 Ripton voters cast ballots on June 30 in the suspense-free election of its first local school board in five years. The ballot featured three candidates — each one running unopposed for terms ranging in length from one to three years. When all the tallies had been counted, it was Joanna Doria receiving 62 votes for a three-year term, Steve Cash reaping 58 for a two-year stint, and Molly Witters receiving 62 for one year on the new panel. Some voters threw their votes to folks not appearing on the ballot. They included: •  Tracey Harrington (3 votes), Charles Billings (2), and...

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Addison County Independent